First, as some have read my prior Wayne Meadows interview story a few updates. While many updates are happening this year, not everything that we had talked about in August will be happening this season. For example the train unfortunately will not receive its (much needed) coat of paint and rehab. Also the Voyager rehab which while there is some work occurring on the ride this off season, and probably more then the ride has seen in MANY years, its entire rehab will be spread over a few years. With that being said many things are happening, so lets take a look.
So here we are at the entrance to the park... though we had been told originally that the plans to re-cover some of the midway had been scrapped due to the new Steel hawk (and costs associated with it), it appears, thankfully, that some of the entrance way has been re-covered with new asphalt. There has been some confusion online since in the past, with every new season the park has re-sealed the existing asphalt, this is not the resealing, this is actually new asphalt. It extends from the security Post 8 (approximately) to the Ranger station/Season Pass processing on the opposite side.
So inside the park we start with Scandinavia. As some know a recent rant of ours has been the towers on the old Scandi Skees/Plaza gifts that were the only part of the building NOT repainted with its refurb a few years back, due to lights on the towers. While we do not have a photo (thanks Jeff), the lights have been removed, and the towers are to be repainted. From what Wayne told us, the lights will not be added back but there are plans to uplight the towers. We will see.
Prepping for trough painting, I wish I could make this scratch and sniff, you could smell the paint.
The Bamboozler station is receiving some work too. Last year the paint on this station looked rather pathetic, it was peeling, rotting, basically not good. The trim on this station has been renovated and you can see that work is continuing along the column bases which still have unpainted wood.
Panda Express eating area is also receiving new concrete and new tables.
A closer view of the ride carriage and seats.
Wayne Meadows himself answering questions about Steelhawk for ACE members.
This photo rates rather high on the cringe worthy scale for Worlds of Fun fans... The pond around the "Henrietta" (the keel) is being filled in. It will no longer have a lagoon, which while looking incredibly dismal these last few years, still its a sad reminder that the last remnant of Henrietta will disappear from the park... From what I have heard there may be some sort of water feature/creek build in below the bridges.
Another look at the Henrietta pond.
On a more positive note, Vittle Griddle looks nice with its new wood and paint job.
Last thing, as many know another of my more recent pet peeves, irritations has been Autobahn and its quite frankly, dismal status operating with only 6-7 cars. We have been advised by Wayne that parts have been purchased from Majestic (bumper car manufacturer) to retrofit and get up to 17 total cars operating on the Autobahn cars. I'm not sure if I should when or if this happens, I will be incredibly thrilled. Well... atleast happy about Der Fender Bender... ahhh Autobahn.
Also to answer the question about the roof lines in Africa (galvanized steel on Congo Clearing/Gorilla Grill), they are to be painted, a green color. Right now they have not be painted yet, the park is waiting for better weather.
So that's about it. I really do like the improvements we are seeing in the park. Do I wish more was happening this year? Of course. However, the park as a whole is admitting to many problems that they are starting to correct, and they are starting to fix them. This is a VAST improvement over the past. I am still optimistic about the future, and it will most definitely be an interesting ride.
More photos from the March 28, 2014 visit to the park can be found on Facebook!